Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Clouds, wonderful Clouds!


Two weeks ago, our Japanese Willow was beautiful (and green). I don’t know whether a disease did this or the heat scorched it. The branches are pliable but the leaves…

Day after day of oppressive, stifling heat makes me yearn for clouds. My scalp burns in the intense sun. Walking through waves of heat is like walking too closely to the outdoor grill. Heat waves get old. I can’t breathe. Yes, the weather affects me, possibly too much. Many people just accept the weather and go on - I wish I were like them. When I think of our troops in Iraq, I realize I am weak.

Yesterday's weather was a blessing for me. Overcast skies cooled us down. The high temperature was seventy-eight and breathing was easy. I hurried home from work, got out of my work clothes and couldn’t wait to visit the back yard. To feel coolness. To see without squinting. To feel a slight breeze that chilled my legs a bit.

I just stood there and enjoyed the darker view. My shoulders relaxed, fell low, and I took a sigh of relief several times. Before I started cooking dinner (I don’t know why I say "dinner" – I grew up referring to the evening meal as “supper”), I had some time to take a stroll around the house.


The Mockingbirds are building a new nest in a sturdy Pin Oak tree. I suspect this baby fell from their flimsy Crepe Myrtle during a windy storm on Saturday night and I didn’t know it perished until yesterday. I wonder where the others are and the true cause. I regret complaining about our Mockingbird over-population. It’s sad.


A bench near the pond would be great. My neighbors probably wonder why I stand for long periods of time and wonder if I am sane. Watching the pond life leaves me tranquil and lowers my blood pressure. I can feel the stress leave my body almost immediately. My Koi are still wary of me – probably wondering who will be netted next so I’ll wait a while before I do another dirty deed.


Welcome to Tadpole Town. Population: soon to be 1.5 million.


One of these days I’ll tire of dragonflies and stop the photos. The colors in this photo are outstanding, and surprisingly so, since it was taken in low light.


My dogs did not grow a tail and longer snouts! Two new dogs have moved in next door. The second one, who was barking inside his new house is a young boxer. They just set up an electric fence yesterday and I wish them luck with it. My dogs would break it in a heartbeat. For those who have an electric fence and own dogs that respect it, that’s wonderful! Does it provide protection for your dogs from outside visitors, though?


Meanwhile, Bel-Bel is busting her chubby gut to meet to her neighbors. Unfortunately, they will probably never meet on a daily basis as our properties are separated with a retaining wall containing dense shrubs and trees. She can hear them... She can smell them… “Mommy, I can’t S-S-SEE!”


“Will you p-p-please let me out of here to hunt down my n-n-neighbor? I want to show them m-m-my hula hoops.”

Yesterday was glorious! The sun peeked through at times today. Time to start dragging that blasted garden hose again...




For those who need to cool off, I wish you seventy-eight degrees.
For those who want to warm up, I wish warm sunshine on your back. For those who are knee-deep in water, I wish the rains to cease.

I’m having a network connection problem again. I lost internet and e-mail last night at 8pm and I was not in the mood for techie-talk because I felt evil. This morning the network was back(?) Calling the cable company or Dell is something I dread so I’m hoping for the best. If you don’t hear from me, this is why.

Happy Independence Day! I will proudly display Stars & Stripes. I hope you will, too.


dmmgmfm said...

Happy 4th of July to you too, Mary. I wish you the best of days.


Lynne at Hasty Brook said...

Mary, your photographs are so lovely, I feel better just seeing them. I'm glad you got at least a short respite from the heat. I hope it lasts for you.

You NEED a bench!

Lynne at Hasty Brook said...

Happy Fourth to you too!!!

Cathy said...

Happy 4th, Mary! You bet we'll be flying stars and stripes! Poor little pups - wanting to see the new neighbors. Awwww.

You go right ahead and meditate over your pond - I so understand the effect of water on the soul - that's why I couldn't live in the desert southwest.

We're being blessed with the cool clear air,also. Blessed is the right word.

cat59 said...

Thanks for sharing the photos. I loved the photos and narration of Bella and the neighbor dogs. I would never trust an electric fence, either. I think I have always had dogs that would withstand a little pain to get to a cat, rabbit, or dog on the other side! We are hoping for water, too, but the weather forecast does not sound too promising for that. We have a large tulip poplar on which about half of its leaves have turned yellow. Happy 4th!

KGMom said...

Too bad about your tree. Is it newly planted? I put in one new tree this year, and have been watering it deeply every week. Don't want to lose it.

I resonate with you on your remark about Iraq--sometimes the news reports the temps there, and I think--whew! But then I read that we have set up huge indoor places with lots of A/C. Good for the troops, but maybe sends the wrong message to Iraqis.

Susan Gets Native said...

You and my neighbors both, Mary. How often do they see my big butt sticking up from the grass as I try to get a Macro of a bug?
Get a bench.
That dragonfly pic is astounding. Quit your day job and be a nature photographer.
My Mom recently got an invisible fence, and she hates it. There are coyotes in the area (she didn't see any until the fence was installed) and she's seriously rethinking her decision.
I need to go lay down. Vicodin is yummy.

thailandchani said...

I'm with you so much on the weather. I respond to it as well, and I can not stand the heat! Or bright sun.

I should have been a bat.


Your photos are always so beautiful! Next month.. I hope... to get one of the cameras you recommended.



LostRoses said...

Gee, Mary, I thought that was a Japanese Maple and it was supposed to look like that! Guess not.

You may have to quit taking pics of dragonflies now since I think you outdid yourself with that fabulous one!

Ruth said...

I feel like I have been personally introduced to the beautiful dragonfly! They seldom stay still for a great shot like that.

The Quacks of Life said...

Happy 4th

for your info Shaun the Sheep debuts on July 8th at 8:55pm Eastern/Central

the episode is Shape Up with Shaun!

Jayne said...

It cooled off a wee bit here too yesterday... only up to 83, but the 90's will be back this week, along with the humidity. Love that dragonfly's colors!!! Happy 4th Mary!

Jess Riley said...

Hope your technical woes have been sorted out...great photos, as always. And I had to laugh at your comment re: the neighbors. I've been going out each night around 11 with a flashlight & bowl of soapy water to pick earwigs--my neighbors across the street are ALWAYS outside & probably think I'm nuts. (Then again, these are the people that were recently ordering one of their dogs to apologize to the other. Repeatedly. Maybe they're kinda nuts, too.)

Happy 4th as well!

NatureWoman said...

Happy 4th Mary! Your photos and commentary are wonderful. Glad it cooled off for you a bit. It has for us, too. If feels really good to be cold at night.

Anonymous said...

As always your photo's rock! I especially liked the one of Bella talking but then the colors in your dragonfly pic was really good too. Hope your 4th is cooler!

Chrissie said...

Your pics are great, Mary, I especially I love the dragonflies. It is odd we are having such extreme weather, I would send you some rain for some sun on my back :-) And may the herons stay away from your tadpoles!

Anonymous said...

Happy 4th of July to you and your family! Hope you get your internet thing worked out!

Q said...

Dear Mary,
Happy 4th!
Dragonflies like to have their photos taken! No need to ever stop!
I love seeing their photos too. That one is printable!
Skipper is lovely too as are doggies!!
Glad you had a break from the heat. I do not like to be hot or sticky. I love cloudy days!

kate said...

Bella is adorable ... I can certainly understand her wanting to meet her new neighbours. Life is so unfair sometimes, huh?

I hope it cools off for you soon- your poor tree looks fried.The dragonfly seems to be entirely unaffected by the heat and humidity.

Every spring I haul out all of my houseplants- mostly keeping them out of direct sunlight. It is amazing how well they do - when I bring them in before the frost hits, they have grown incredibly.

The jade plant grows by leaps and bounds every summer ... it usually receives a few hours of direct sunlight and seems to like it.

Your fish are huge!! Mine look like babies in comparison.

Naturegirl said...

Loved reading this post and viewing your wonderful photos! That dragon fly so beautiful and the baby who never made it so sad. Surley you gave it a deserving grave.Cute photos of the doggies!I never complain about the warmer temps as our summer is so short ...I agree that it's hard on the gardens..drying out but I only have to look at my winter garden photos and all the freeze and I quickly get over it!!Air condition helps.
We have just recieved an overnight rain that we so badly needed..but with it comes migraine headaches for me. Is there a happy medium?
with headache and heavy clouds NG

RuthieJ said...

Hi Mary,
That dragonfly picture is just awesome. Little tadpoles are cute too. We've had some nice weather days too, but mid- to upper-90's predicted for the weekend. I don't like it when it gets that hot (makes me crabby-er!)

Our neighbor has a 1-year-old Boxer with an electric fence. Tyson knows exactly how close he can get without getting a tingle. He's never run through it even when we walk by with our dogs. But it's true, nothing will keep other dogs from going on to Tyson's lawn. I would worry if it were my dogs outside...

smilnsigh said...

Thank you for your comment on my 4th of July entry, concerning our military. Oh I'm always thinking of them, but don't say much, in this particular blogging venue.

I'm so happy you have relief from the oppressive heat. It would wilt me too. More so, the older I get.

But I too, think of our military, when I get hot. But still, most of them are a wee bit younger than we are. Although you are much younger than I am.

Oh don't stop with pics of dragonflies. I love them. But what kind of a camera and filter do you have, to take such a magnificent photo?!?!?! Oh I am so *jealous* of your ability!!!! :-)

I certainly hope your internet problems are quickly and easily solved. I'd not wish to 'do battle' over such, either. Hope, hope, hope for you.


smilnsigh said...

I'm glad you can comment in my ding-dang 'smilnsigh.' I'm going batty with this {some can't comment} issue. Grrrrr... ,-)


Chrissie said...

Hello, Mary. You have done wonders in such a short time! Well done! Imagine what it will all look like in 20 :-).

cat59 said...

I'm with Smilnsigh--I want to know what kind of camera you have. Also have to agree with Susan Gets Native--you should be a nature photogrpaher. I guess you ARE one, but you could get paid for it!

Lynne at Hasty Brook said...

I tagged you with the Eight Random Things Meme. (only if you want to)

Anonymous said...

Mary, just visiting your blog by way of Kate's - love love your photography and hope you'll be back soon with more.